This report is the 10th annual CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION of REALTORS® (C.A.R.) buyer survey that details how home buyers have changed their behaviors in recent years to adapt to the new housing market environment and to the increased use of the Internet in the real estate business.
Some of the key findings include:
• Distressed sales made up more than half of sales in California. According to results from the survey, 49 percent of all buyers bought a home through a regular market sale, 38 percent bought an REO/bank-owned property, and 13 percent bought a short-sale property.
• Home buyers, in general, were optimistic about the future direction of home prices in their
neighborhood. While fewer than one in ten believed prices would go up over the next year, one-third believed prices would go up in the next 5 years, and 60 percent thought prices would go up in 10 years.
• Home buyers continued to experience considerable difficulty in obtaining financing for the homes they bought. On a scale of “1” to “10”, with “1” being “very easy” to obtain financing and “10” being “very difficult”, home buyers reported a high average level of difficulty in obtaining finance of 8.1.
• A recent study by the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS® suggests that the financial benefits of owning a home outweigh that of renting for first-time buyers. For a first-time buyer household that purchases an entry-level home between Jan. 1 and Nov. 30, 2009, the overall tax liability savings in the first five years of homeownership is well over $11,000 when compared to renters.